17 September 2011

Shipbreaking and recycling policy next month: Dilip Barua

DHAKA, Sept 17 (BSS) - The government plans to declare the much-awaited 'Shipbreaking and Recycling Policy' next month aimed at bringing dynamism and discipline in the industry, Industries Minister Dilip Barua said here.

"Shipbreaking policy has already been included in the National Industrial Policy-2010. We would be able to declare the Shipbeaking and Recycling Policy next month," Barua told a seminar here.

Department of Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering of BUET in cooperation with Ananda Shipyard and Slipways Ltd (ASSL) arranged the seminar on 'Ship Recycling: Bangladesh Perspective' at Council Bhaban of Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET).

BUET Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr SM Nazrul Islam, Pro-Vice Chancellor Prof Dr M Habibur Rahman spoke on the occasion as special guests while ASSL chairman Dr.Abdullahel Bari presented the keynote paper on 'Shipbeaking Methodology: The present Status and Way Forward'.

Barua said the policy would be an integrated guideline containing necessary compliance options for preventing shipbreakers from polluting the rivers.

Talking to BSS on the sidelines of the seminar, he said the main purpose of the policy is to bring discipline in the industry as ships are now being dismantled haphazardly jeopardizing the environment.

Protection of labourers' interest and the environment are among the salient features of the shipbreaking and recycling policy, he said.

The minister called upon the shipbreakers for taking extra measures from the perspective of corporate social responsibility (CSR) for the wellbeing of tens of thousands of workers in the industry.

Referring to his recent visit to ship breaking industry in China, Barua said the experiences of China's ship breaking and recycling methods have been shared during the formulation of the policy.

"We do not want to enforce stringent law on anyone involved in polluting environment by dismantling ships," he said, adding that the association of shipbreakers would look into the mater.

Referring to the dismantling of ships in an environment- friendly manner in China and Turkey, Ananda shipyard chairman Dr. Bari said such job is hazardous and too difficult in Bangladesh.

He said the country needs a huge number of experienced and trained people to dismantle ships in an integrated manner keeping the environment unhurt.

"We earn a huge amount of money by breaking ships at the cost of the environment. Hazardous shipbreaking should not continue any longer considering the environment," he added.

Ships should come to the coast of Bangladesh for free considering that the country does the dirty job of breaking ships, he said.

Prof Nazrul Islam called upon BUET professionals to create leadership to compete with the intensified global competition.

Experts say shipbreaking in Asia accounted for more than 90%of the total volume of scrapped ships during 1998-2007. Less than 2%of the ship recycling activity during the period from 1997-2006 was carried out in developed countries.

Three countries of South Asia -- Bangladesh, India and Pakistan -- account for 70-80% of the international market for shipbreaking of ocean-going vessels, according to experts.

Source: BSS. 17 September 2011

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